Meet Elaine

  • Elaine has an adult son with special needs who requires daily care.
  • She wants to be sure to leverage all government disability benefits.
  • Current Assets: $1.8 million.
  • Protection Strategy: Special Needs Trust.

Meet Elaine

  • Elaine has an adult son with special needs who requires daily care.
  • She wants to be sure to leverage all government disability benefits.
  • Current Assets: $1.8 million.
  • Protection Strategy: Special Needs Trust.

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Elaine established a Special Needs Trust to ensure her son has the long term care required once she is unable to care for him herself.  Here is her story.

Elaine and her husband grew up in Arlington, Massachusetts and have known each other since childhood. Shortly after they married, they bought their first home in Arlington to be close to their cousins and have lived here for the last forty years.

Elaine’s husband was an accomplished and skilled carpenter and painter and worked for a local company for many years.  He won the praise of his supervisors and customers because of his good work ethic and attention to detail. Eventually, he founded his own contracting business. Many of his former clients followed him and the business prospered.

Elaine, meanwhile, ran the household and took care of their four children—Andrew, Annie, Geoff, and Gina. Geoff was born with Down Syndrome and has required additional attention and assistance since childhood. Now an adult, Geoff continues to live with Elaine and her husband in the home they have shared since the early 1980s. Geoff enjoys working in the garden with his mother and helping out in the kitchen. He is a favorite uncle of his nieces and nephews.

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A guide to trusts for asset protection, estate tax avoidance, and legacy management

While Geoff has a full and happy life living with his parents, they worry about who will take care of him when they can no longer take care of themselves. While Elaine is confident their other children will step in to help their brother, they want to put something aside to ensure Geoff is financially secure.

Moreover, they know that Geoff’s Medicare coverage alone saves him more in insurance costs than they could hope to pay on a monthly basis. They need to structure his inheritance in a way that will not jeopardize his eligibility for government disability benefits. Additionally, someone needs to manage the finances for Geoff.

In reviewing their options, a special needs trust was the obvious choice for Elaine and her husband. They have set up the trust with their younger daughter Gina as trustee. When the day comes that they are no longer able to live at home, the plan, as specified in the trust, is for Geoff to live with Gina, who still lives in the neighborhood. As part of a comprehensive approach to planning their estate, they have made separate arrangements for their older son Andrew to take over the family business.

We know our community; we know trusts; we can’t wait to get to know you.

Gosselin Law has helped many families set up special needs trusts to protect their most vulnerable members. We take pride in helping people like Elaine through wise estate and trust planning. We have changed the name and identifiable details of this character in order to protect our clients privacy, yet this story captures the circumstance and type of clients Gosselin Law has helped over the past 25 years.

If you see yourself in this story, or are otherwise wondering where to begin estate planning, call our office today.

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